A New Home

Oy, it’s been a really long time since I had a minute to sit down and write a post here!  There’s a valid reason for this:  moving.

A little under a month ago, Ray and I signed a lease on a new space, our first space alone as a couple.  Since then, I’ve been here, at the new place, holding down the fort, while Ray and the former roommate undergo the process of disentangling their lives back at the old spot.  This has meant, mostly for Ray, but with me included when possible, a lot of back-and-forth from there to here, a lot of packing, decision-making, and general exhaustion between us both.  Nerves have remained steady for the most part, and all of it has been fueled by way too much coffee.

Still, Ray has been making thoughtful and determined decisions about what he wants to bring here, and what he wants to shed from his life, and it’s been a fascinating observation to make.  Though our current living room is full of boxes and projects to be completed, I’ve been learning to put more trust in his decisions about how to lay out our new home, and for the most part, he’s been really, really good at including me in these choices.  Unlike partners in the past, I have a say in the matter here, and rather than defaulting to my standard “whatever you want, dear” line, I’m taking an active role in the process.  It’s been empowering, to say the least.

We’ve also, somehow, adopted a cat.

I know, I know – I’ve said time and time again just how much of a dog person I am, but for now, while our schedules are as they are, having a dog just wouldn’t be fair to the dog, and the cat that has come into our lives is, well, pretty damned easy.  She’s a six-year-old tabby named Bailey and she’s pretty awesome.  Most of her day is spent lounging on the back of the couch, or on the bed, but on occasion, she’s been known to wind herself up and chase whatever suits her fancy around the place.  Her head-butts are epic, and she’s super-cuddly when it comes time for bed.  She’s also really adaptable to the changes we’re making here as the move-in process continues.

I’ve also been away from the keyboard here because I’m also finishing off two classes at Portland Community College.  I signed up for these two classes with the weird idea that working forty-seven hours a week at my job would still afford me time to have a life and get my schoolwork done.  HAHAHAHAH!!!  It’s been a struggle, to say the least, and so I’m really, really looking forward to getting all of my work done and moving into my summer.  Next fall, if all goes right, I’ll be enrolled in classes at Oregon State University, but only taking one course a semester, which, hopefully, I can manage to fit into my life.  I do like taking the classes I’m taking, and I am learning a TON about programming and such.  We’ve been playing around with C++ and Python this semester, and I’m finally beginning to wrap my head around the idea of object-oriented programing, and what that really means.  Since I started a few semesters ago, things have become weirdly repetitive with each iteration of classes I take.  Programming languages have built off each other time and time again, so noticing the overlaps and such has made things much more smooth as time has progressed.  Eventually, I’ll be able to list out a few programming languages that I have experience with, and can start to really dive deep into software development and bug-finding, which is where I think I want to take all of this gained knowledge.  For now, the roll continues, and I just need to lurch through the next couple of weeks as my courses wrap up.  I can do this.  More coffee!!

I’m really, really enjoying the feeling of having my name on a lease, of having a set of keys that are mine, and a new home of my own that I get to share with the man I love.  Once the dust settles, and we are into a rhythm here, I have a feeling things are going to get much better between Ray and myself.  Not that they’re bad now – not at all.  I just know that his mind and time is completely filled with the move and transitions and all of that, all while the summer season is ramping up at his job, along with the many other plates he needs to keep spinning.

Anyway, enough from me for now.  I need to get back to my homework and polish off this cup of coffee.  Thanks for dropping in and checking in on me today!

XX

Thom

A Lifting Fog

For months now, probably since my knee blew out in early February, I’ve been living in a state of pause.  I stopped going to the gym.  I stopped chasing health goals all around, and found myself looking at my list of things to do and achieve, and simply turning away from them.  Each one of these goals felt insurmountable, unattainable, and requiring way too much focus and effort than I could muster.  I don’t think I realized just how depressed and sanguine I’d become as I spent the month on the couch nursing my injury.

Summer has come, and I’m not any closer to reaching those goals – fitness, fiscal liberation, and the like – but something has snapped and broken inside me, for the better.

Earlier this week, I got news from a dear friend about a situation that has set him back on his heels in terms of his own life-trajectory.  He’s facing a steep challenge over the next few months, possibly years, and while he reached out to me for support, I felt myself reverting into Oldest Sibling mode, planning and scheming and laying out a framework for how to help him move forward.  I listened with intent to how he was feeling, and will continue to do so as he moves forward, but what this has done for me personally has been the gear-shift I’ve been needing.

I found myself able to sit down and go further with a chapter and section of my memoir that has been a huge challenge to face and come to terms with.  I found a pathway forward in my own health journey that, for the first time in a long time, felt deeply close to my heart and something that I could claim as my own, rather than buying into someone else’s system, and ending up poorer and just as out of shape as when I started.  I am seeing myself for what I am, right now, but I’m also once again visualizing where I want to be in a year’s time, when I turn 40, and what kinds of things I can do on a daily and consistent basis that will bring me to that place.  That lamp in the dark, the thing that I am making my way towards, became clear, as though a thick bank of fog finally lifted and blew away.

This has been a good week.

It’s good to be back in my skin again, rather than feeling like an object in orbit around this lump of flesh that seemed to exist without purpose.  I’m looking forward to see where this new-found drive takes me.  Right now, though, I’m going to pour myself another cup of coffee and enjoy a quiet Thursday morning.

It should be noted that through all of this, Ray has been a steady rock.  I’ve been able to lament to him about my stasis, and time after time, he reminded me that it’s okay to pause, to stop obsessing, to stop beating myself up for needing a break in all that I’ve got going on.  We took off on a camping trip to Walla Walla, Washington, and even then, while I was dealing with a cold and full of snot and ick, he remained constant and life-affirming, all while I was feeling so dejected for seemingly ruining our trip.  I am reminded daily just how lucky I am to have him in my life.

 

Two Years

We have marked two years together as a couple, capped off by our most recent trip.  We met up in Phoenix, Arizona, where Raymond took me around to the places he grew up, and showed me the geography that shaped his childhood and younger years.

For weeks leading up to the trip, it was clear that he was going through some sort of transformation.  Ray got quiet, was doing a lot of hibernation and introspection, and like a turtle, he retreated into his shell, waiting for the clouds to pass and the way to be clear.  While I don’t know the exact measure and cadence of his thoughts in those weeks leading up to the trip back home, I could tell that he was in deliberation.

Two years is the longest relationship he’s ever been committed to.  Two years, while just a number, was of massive significance to him.

I met his mother.  I got to see the dead mining town where he grew up.  I got to spend some time in the little house, with the muddy yard and all of the animals, that shaped the Raymond that I’ve grown to love and adore.  I saw the skies overhead.  As the miles swept under us and out around us across the vastness of the desert, I found myself wondering what it was like to be eight or ten or twelve years old and having this be the only world you’ve ever known.  What did it mean to not have trees, apart from a few aged cottonwoods, to frame your view of nature?  What was summer like without running water, without a break from the heat?  How many billions of stars twinkled overhead in the deep blackness of unhindered space, and which one was the first that he saw and counted?

His childhood was so different than mine, if only by the way the landscape altered our imaginations.  Still, there are space where we overlap.  We both have a shared awe with the natural world around us.  We both can appreciate both being in the middle of an urban center and the madness that we escape the moment we get beyond the urban boundaries.  We both know how to find Polaris in the night sky.  We both close our eyes and inhale deeply when the ground is freshly dampened by a rain.  We both know how to let go and be honest with ourselves and with each other, holding honest conversations in the strangest of places.  We reach out instinctively for the other’s hand to squeeze when words can’t explain the feelings, or simply fall short.

Two years into this, and I love him even more.  Two years, and he’s coming back out of his shell.

“We’ve both put on a little weight together, and that’s not a bad thing, Thomas.  We’re just happy.  Stop being so worried about it all the time.”

He is right.  We are happy.

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Shared Space Anxiety: An Understanding

Tomorrow, I begin the process of bringing stuff to my next address.  I will be officially moving in with Ray, and as of July 1, 2015, we will begin sharing a habitation together.  I have to say, though, the last month or so has been fraught with emotions, and I’ve not been able to pin down just why, until today.

I was out on a walk, a seven-mile journey around my side of town.  Over the last week, I’ve taken multiple multi-mile walks, and used the time both as a means to focus on myself and my body in motion, but also to avoid the overwhelming feelings of anxiety and nerves that this upcoming move has brought up in me.  It’s been nice to feel my muscles flex, to feel blood rushing through my veins and arteries, to focus on my breath, my pulse, my footfalls.  It’s been nice to take some of the mental machinations and let them flow through the rest of my body.  I’m built to deal with anxiety by taking out on the entirety of my body. It’s what I’ve always done. Still, I had no idea why I have been feeling so damned uptight. Moving in with my boyfriend has never been this hard.

As I shot a text to a friend, though, after I’d explained how I had a meltdown last night, and a little disagreement with Ray, and a few tears, it all came into focus. The reason I am so wound up about this new chapter in my life, and in my life with Ray, is because, for the first time ever, I’m able to do this kind of thing without compromising myself in the process.  What I mean is that, unlike every other time I’ve given up my independence and moved in under the same roof as the man who held my heart, this time I don’t have to give up a thing.  Ray has never, and will never, ask me to compromise myself for the sake of him or our relationship.  This was a foundational element when he and I started dating over a year ago, and in that time, it’s been underscored and underlined over and over again by him. He’s never required me to stop behaving in a certain way, or doing the things I like to do, or talking to the people I care for. He’s never required me to live in his shadows. Because of this, I get to walk into this new living arrangement with my eyes wide open. I get to experience this not just as an attachment and accessory to Ray’s life, but as moment in my own life, under my own steam, and in my own way. I get to feel and be and see thing through my own emotions and eyes unlike ever before.

My mother warned me, as she scooped me up out of Boston and brought me back to Maine after Nathaniel and I split, that, like her, I have a tendency to lose myself in the relationships I make. Whenever I’ve given over my heart to anyone, it came at a price – my identity. Suddenly, my needs and desires and thoughts took second place, or remained completely off-stage. I did this out of my own free will because it always meant that, as an exchange for my love and support, the person I was giving it up to would be in my life for as long as I could imagine. Or, so I thought. In every moment when this happened, when this dark and wordless exchange of self for something else occurred, I spent so much time and energy and effort justifying it. It was as if I knew what I was giving up, but had no words to express it.  Perhaps I found the entire idea of subjugating myself to the whims and needs of another so abhorrent that I flat-out refused to believe it was actually happening. In the end, with Thomas, Nathaniel, and Caleb, I always ended up on the losing end of things. Whenever I would step up and use my voice, or express a thing that would identify me as Thom and not just whoever’s boyfriend, I would be scolded, told to leave, and ended up hurt.  Every damned time.

Part of me is terrified of this happening again with regards to Ray, even though he has been adamant and forceful about me remaining the man he fell for, and not changing who I am to meet his needs.  Being who I am right now, and who I might change into in the future as a result of my own choices and activities, is exactly the man he wants me to be.  He’s never intoned or suggested otherwise.  When I feel frozen with fear about this next phase of my life, I need to remember this covenant between him and I that defines the kinds of boundaries we both require.  It is possible to remain true to who I am and still have infinite love for Ray – how he was when I met him, how he is today, and who he will become in the future.

I want to think that this anxiety, shared by both him and I, has come about because we are both present and accounted for while it’s occurring. It also, for me, gives a certain amount of gravity and weight to the entire process – something that never was there before. It’s intense, for certain, but perhaps that also comes from the fact that this is actually one of the most important choices we’ve made as a couple.  I have to respect that, all the while taking care of myself, and still remaining open to Ray’s needs and anxieties as well.  He’s never done this before, and I’ve always had a rotten experience when I’ve undertaken the act of sharing space. This time, though, is so much better, so much more energizing, so much more fulfilling.

Another Step

As of July 1, 2015, I will no longer be living where I currently am.

Since the beginning of last year, I’ve been renting a room from Bil and Brandon, a couple who I got to know in my early days here in Portland.  Bil and I had become connected in Denver, and went hiking and hung out a few times, prior to my departure from there to here, and then their subsequent move to Portland shortly after.  When things blew up between Caleb and myself, and I was stuck in a precarious living situation, Bil and Brandon opened up their home to me for a very reasonable rental rate, and gave me shelter and a place to call home while I got back on my feet and began my job as a bus operator.  Immediately following my move-in, I met Raymond, and for the last year and a half, I’ve been splitting my time between the place with all of my stuff and at Raymond’s house. It has been a truly wonderful period in my life, with lots of personal growth, a better understanding of what it means to be in love with another man, and lots of roots have been planted here in Portland.  Due to circumstances out of their control for the boys, and the shift in plans about turning their basement into a full-fledged apartment for me to rent, the time has come for me to find another place to hang my hat.

Raymond, being the angel that he is, immediately told me, upon my need to shift addresses, “We will figure it out.”  What I didn’t know was that, also immediately, he had sent word to his current roommate that I was looking for a new address, and that if I moved in with them for a while, we could all save money and find a larger place to share in the very near future.  The two of them are currently not on a lease, and are living month-to-month where they are.  While it’s a little apartment with almost no back yard or an allowance for pets such as the dog we both want, it does have a proximity to the MAX line and major bus lines that is super convenient.  Having spent a great deal of time there, I’ve come to learn the quirks of their apartment, including the way that the neighbors are, what his roommate is like, and their living habits.  While it’s not ideal, as the space will be tight, I accepted their offer to come live with them.

For the first time, in a long time, I am going to be living with my boyfriend.

For the last month or so, while I’ve been wrapping my head around this upcoming movement, I’ve been paying particular attention to Raymond’s emotional status about it all.  He’s never lived with a boyfriend before.  He doesn’t know what it’s going to be like having his beau in his bed every night.  Already I’m aware that I’ll need to be vigilant about giving him his own space and time, even within the small confines of what will be our little home.  I’m worried about being a burden on him, and that we will have some inevitable friction from time to time because of the space.  Given our track record, though – only one major fight in the year and a half we’ve been together – I think we will be able to manage.  As long as he’s honest with me about how he’s feeling, and I am reciprocating, we should be okay.  I mean, who knows, it could work out really, really well.

I’m also really apprehensive because of my past.  Once again, my past experiences are dictating my emotions about a current situation, and I need to recognize that.  I gave up my life and lived with Thomas.  I gave up my life and lived with Nathaniel.  I’ve always been a roommate, and only very infrequently lived on my own. I was a roommate in Lakewood, CO.  I was a roommate in Denver, CO.  I was a live-in lover and houseboy when I first moved here to Portland, OR.  I have been a housemate in a tiny two-bedroom home for the last year and a half.  Now, I’m going to be, once again, sharing space with two other people.  While I’m very okay with being a roommate, I’m also keenly aware that this is not how a typical 37-year-old lives.  I mean, maybe it’s the new age and new economy that we are in, but at this point, I should have at least my own apartment, my own set of keys, my own utility bills.  Because of circumstance and life choices, though, I do not have these things, and I’ve been trying to find a way to resolve these emotions inside myself.

I’ve also been deeply worried about my past repeating itself in terms of relationships going awry when we live together.  This has happened every time I’ve lived with the man who held my heart, and I do not want it to happen with Raymond.  I need to be reminded that my past is not my present or future, and a recent adventure that he and I took helped to underscore this for me.

This past week, Ray and I flew back to Denver together.  I had wanted to take him on a trip to the Mile High City with me after we got back from Hawaii last January.  I wanted to show him my old haunts and introduce him to some of my old friends up there.  We ended up staying with my friend Amanda, a dear friend of mine that I’ve known for nearly thirty years.  She is my age, and while our paths have been shared quite a few times over the course of three decades, she seemingly has her life more together than I do.  She has a home of her own.  She has a decent credit score.  She owns her car.  She has a stable, normal, adult life, with stable, normal, adult issues (though she’d never attest to that fact).  I am envious of her for these things, and while she sees what Ray and I have as relationship goals for herself, I see her life and her world and think that, perhaps, I truly am a mess and need to get myself together and grow up along those same lines.

It was good to show him where I had lived, and the places that I had hung out when I lived in Denver.  Truth be told, I kept peeking around corners to see if I’d run into any old ghosts, old emotions, and old regrets while we were there.  I had been thinner, a little more crazy, and a lot more loose and fast with myself and the fellas I’d hung out with when I lived there.  At that point in my life,  I was still very much running from my past.  I’d slingshot myself into Denver in a mad and furious drive across the country from Maine, trying to escape the depression and anxiety that my life back there had dealt me.  I was not facing down the darkness of my early gay years.  I was not facing the implosion that my marriage to Nathaniel had become.  I was not facing the fears of growing older, of being in control of my life, or of taking responsibility for my actions.  I simply kept running.  Denver, with its explosive nighttime thunderstorms, dry and oppressive heat, and hundreds of miles of mountain trails to disappear on, gave me ample spaces and corners to avoid being Thomas as much as I wanted to.

I didn’t really run into any of the shadows that I was expecting on this last trip.  What I did find, however, was a group of friends and acquaintances that I’d drawn close to in my time in Denver who not only were very happy to see me again, but were also quick to point out just how happy I was.  They all loved Ray, as I thought they might, but what truly stuck with me was how much they simply wanted to know I was okay.  I was moved by their excitement for us, especially when we talked about this upcoming shared living experience.  Every single one of my friends who I got to see were genuinely happy for me, and thought that Ray and I made a really great couple.  I found myself full of pride in both Raymond and my decision to let him into my life.

It was also exponentially clear to me just how much I’d changed since I’d left Denver.  I have grown up, and I have come into myself in ways that I would have never thought possible when I was there.  Portland has been transformative for me, and continues to be.  While I am still a little apprehensive about this next step that Ray and I are taking, I do remain optimistic.  I’ve learned how to speak with a truth and power that I’ve never had before now.  I am thankful and full of gratitude in ways that resonate deep within me.  I remain humbled and awestruck by the ways that this relationship with Raymond keeps redefining what it means to be in Love.

Loose Ends

I actively avoided writing this last night.

I got off the train, and walked home in the perpetual rain we’ve been having lately, and pondered on the day I’d just had with Ray and Yoni. It was a wander through downtown Portland, doing a little retail therapy, looking at really expensive home furnishings and such with the two of them. Coffee, and a hangover, had put me in a definite reflective frame of mind. Ray and I had spent the morning have some of the most amazing sex, and both of us were in a different space as we meandered in and out of the shops. What struck me, though, was that Ray was actively seeking out things to include in our home, in our life. We went into one of his favorite paper goods stores, and I saw him picking out paper and envelopes for potential wedding invitations.

Lately, he and I have been talking more about taking that leap. We still need to move in together. We still have a lot of bridges to cross before making that kind of promise to each other, but right now, all signs point to this being a thing for both of us – marriage. Of course, though, for me, that means actually finalizing the divorce from Nathaniel.

I’ve been sitting on the paperwork since early November. I’ve got an envelope full of signatures and notarizations, but haven’t brought them to the courthouse here in Portland. There is a $300 filing fee, and I have struggled to come up with that kind of money all at once to pay. Perhaps, though, part of me simply avoided it. It is easier to take Ray out for dinner, to pay a little more towards my credit cards, to buy one more sandwich, coffee, pack of cigarettes than pay to end this mistake in my life. I finally admitted to Ray last night that I’m scared to do this thing.

I hated my parents when they got a divorce. I felt like I had been torn apart, punctured and sliced and flayed, with a burning agony that has lasted, and has left me a little disfigured, a little burled knot that has taken years to heal over. There are few moments in my life that have been so excruciating, actually. It meant not talking to either parent, on any level that mattered, for years. I ripped them both apart, too, using my words, my emotions, and my silence, to judge them and to keep them away from me. I held onto that resentment for a very, very long time. They had failed me. They had broken my family. They had ruined my idea of what love meant, what marriage meant, and what it meant to have a home.

When Nathaniel and I got married, it was in an attempt to fix the things that had divided us. It was, in my mind, a means of repairing damage, and of making a promise to each other to be there, through it all, and make what we had work. I never told him the weight of my decision to agree to marry him, though, and in the end, when he told me it was over, he did not know just how much rage and pain and sorrow he’d opened up in me by breaking this covenant between us. Again, I experienced the renting, the disembowelment of the power of my words, my agreements, my vows. We hadn’t redefined marriage – it was still simply words you could take back when they no longer proved useful. It had all gone stale and wrong and dark between us, and the life and energy of what marriage is had been killed off.

That was when I really started running. I redoubled my efforts to distance myself from the pain. I bounced from man to man, from town to town, from mountaintop to mountaintop, just to not have to face it all. The moment I learned the word ‘no,’ on that dusty slope just west of Denver, was the moment it all started to turn for me, but I still had so many more miles to run. Using Caleb as a means to get out of the high, thin air of Colorado, was part of that. Testing the waters of being open and honest with him, though embarrassing and painful in its own way, was just me really learning to stand on my own two feet. It was okay that he and I ended. It was okay that things shifted between us, and that I was not the man for him. I had still made the leap to Portland, and once I started working, along with getting a chance to move out here where I am now, it felt like I was actually living again, on my own terms. Of course, in that moment is when I met Ray, and why, now, as I stand here, holding this stack of papers that put a legal end to a life-promise I’d made to another, I’m filled with dread and regret.

I don’t want to be a promise-breaker. I don’t want to be a divorced man. I don’t want marriage to always be something that can be thrown away. I refuse to enter into that kind of agreement with anyone again if they aren’t willing to stick by their own words through it all – darkness and light. I don’t want Ray to see me as some sort of man who makes these kind of covenants on a whim, and just as easily ends them. He reassured me last night, as I told him these things over a text message, but still, I worry.

The other day, Ray admitted to me that he’s waiting to see if I actually go forward with the divorce.  It matters a lot to him, he said.  He wants to fully commit to us, to let go of any lingering loose ends and doubts he might have about us, but it means I need to do this thing and make myself fully and legally available to him.  Going through with the divorce, to him, means I’m serious about what him and I have begun to build.  In his mind, my marriage status hasn’t been a massive roadblock, but over time, it’s become a thing that should be dealt with if he’s going to actually feel comfortable about making long-term dreams into realities with me.  As I sit here and write this, I’m finding myself filled with pride in him for admitting this, for taking his own emotions as seriously as this, and calling me to make my own stand.  He wants me happy, and he wants unfettered access to all of me.  He knows this darkness has been hanging over me for too long, and he wants me to put an end to it, and by taking myself seriously, demonstrate just how committed I am to being a fully-realized version of myself for whatever lies ahead for us.  In no way is it an ultimatum, however.  He’s a patient man.  He just wants me happy, and I know this, no matter how much hearing these words from him did put me back on my heels.  He is right, as have been all of my friends and people who’ve met me since Nathaniel and I ended.  This divorce is a that that needs to legally happen if I’m ever going to find a path forward again in my life.

Today, as it’s Sunday and the courthouse is closed, I’m going to buy myself a new pair of running shoes. I started this journey by running away, and now it’s time to run back. I need to run back to the starting line. Ray deserves a man who’s willing to at least come back from the journey, with all of this knowledge, insight, and maturity. I need to complete this chapter, this phase, this movement in my life. I need to file the papers, sign the receipt, and let go of the broken promises of my past. They cannot have this much power over my present and future. I need to square all of this and get my life back in order.

After a Stroll

I was out on my walk this morning, struggling a bit after consuming two double bourbons last night, but set to right after a slug of coffee from my local favorite cafe in my neighborhood.  While putting one foot in front of the other in succession without stumbling, my mind began to drift a bit, as it tends to once I set my body into a rhythmic motion.  In the downpour (Oregon snow, I’m calling it), I started to wonder about the state of things in my life, especially creatively.

The truth is, I haven’t written anything of significance in a while now.  I’ve been caught up/bogged down with work and the cycle of my schedule, that I haven’t allowed myself to sit at my keyboard and do much more than journaling (yes, just like this).  I have been centered on getting up, getting dressed, getting to work, getting through my shift, getting home, getting some food, getting to bed.  All this arriving, movement, and focus on the next step has limited my insights into the moment of now, the here, and the present, which is where most of my writing actually comes from.  It’s true, though, I’ve written a lot in the past- and future-tenses, but it’s always seemed to come up short.  Instead, as my life has begun to teach me, my words are a bit stronger when I write as a snapshot, rather than casting my narrative behind or before me.

It’s with this in mind that I’m looking towards our trip to Hawaii for some moments of pause and to catch up with myself.  In just over a week, Ray and I will be boarding a plane for eight days in Oahu.  It’s my work vacation, plus a few extra days that I’ve finagled with my schedule, and it’s time off with him as well.  Our plans include parking our asses on the beach, swimming in the Pacific ocean when we feel like it, and taking a few hikes, as well as a few car trips around the island.  I have nothing else on my agenda, nothing demanded of me, no pressures.  Much like the adventures he and I shared over the summer, when I could take out my journal and capture some of my momental thoughts and ideas, I plan on being very present, and very accounted for, each day that we are away.  I need this.  I need to take stock, reassess, and allow myself to just enjoy a few days of being alive without constraint or a pull in one direction or the other.  Ray, for similar reasons, is going to do just the same.

I can feel my creative self wilting a bit.  I can feel my vision becoming more tunneled, and a lot more jaded as of late.  It’s as if I’m calcifying slowly, and I need to pour more water, more fluid, back into my world so as to keep myself limber and flexible enough to shape a thought, expression, or idea into something that matters and has purpose.

I realize that this is me, pinning my life on a future thing, which goes against everything I have come to understand about how I live my life where I’ve gone wrong in the past.  I will be spending the holidays with a man whom I truly love and am proud to call my companion, and I hope to be as present in the upcoming days as possible.  I’m sure, together, he and I will daydream about the pending escape from this mundanity, though, and for that, I am already thankful.